California Vets Want to Prescribe Medical Marijuana to Pets

Angela Vuckovic
by Angela Vuckovic
Is it high time for pets to get access to some herbal help? California lawmakers seem to think so.

First things first: no, I’m not talking about giving drugs to your four-legged companion. When it comes to pets, pot is to be used in the form of non-psychoactive cannabis oil, and if the new bill passes, your veterinarian can be the one prescribing it. In fact, it’s the main reason why lawmakers are pushing this bill: currently, veterinarians are prohibited under state law to discuss cannabis treatment and could face disciplinary charges if they mention any of the various medical marijuana options for pets.

In their current situation, concerned owners are left without a professional opinion to rely on when it comes to cannabis-related treatments: instead of consulting a licensed vet, pawrents turn to internet and pet owner communities for advice on doses and applications. But why would anyone want to give cannabis oil to their pets in the first place?

It’s actually quite similar to the use of medical marijuana for humans. Dogs, cats, and even other pets could experience benefits from cannabis oil in case of chronic pain, nausea or anxiety issues. The oil in question contains cannabidiol, the marijuana compound with healing attributes, and has no THC, the substance responsible for the “high” one usually thinks of when pot is mentioned. So, essentially, there is no risk of your furball getting stoned if that’s what’s worrying you.

However, that doesn’t mean that using cannabis oil, tincture, or other medicinal products to treat pets is a straightforward process. Not all animals will react the same to this natural alternative to heavy medications, and for some, the risks far outweigh any potential benefits. This is why it’s important for this bill to pass, because, without approval and instructions from a veterinarian, any alternative medication can turn do more harm than good.

Angela Vuckovic
Angela Vuckovic

A proud mama to seven dogs and ten cats, Angela spends her days writing for her fellow pet parents and pampering her furballs, all of whom are rescues. When she's not gushing over her adorable cats or playing with her dogs, she can be found curled up with a good fantasy book.

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